Barracuda Front Fender Emblem

1966 BARRACUDA RESTORATION

BP29D 62 625114

Engine Front Engine Front
Front view of the bare painted engine. The throttle spring anchor is visible here. Iím still using one of the original spring hose clamps for the bypass hose and two original spring clamps on the lower radiator hose. Iím using stainless screw-tightened hose clamps everywhere else. The water pump is the second for this engine. I hope the shaft seal is still good. The bearings seem to be OK. Front view of engine with all parts on.

Engine Front Right Engine Front Left
Front right ĺ view of engine. The thermostat housing neck goes to the left to clear the A/C compressor. I wonít install the compressor until everything is running well. The black bracket supports the alternator. Now I have to find the alternator and the belt tightening brace that goes with it. The fan has its original coat of paint. I just wiped on furniture polish to make it a little shinier. (Thatís the back of my 1973 Plymouth Fury Gran Sedan in the back.) Front left ĺ view shows the odd configuration of the exhaust manifold for the left side. The 273-LA engine was designed specifically to fit within the engine compartment of the early Valiants, Darts, and Barracudas (106Ē wheel base). It isnít visible in any of these photos, but there is a rounded indention on the left side of the block that provides a little extra clearance between it and the steering gear box. The indention continues into the head and, since both heads are identical, there is that odd little rounded notch at the back of the right head that doesnít match up with anything. I replaced the left motor mount many years ago and painted the bracket red. A lot of the red paint came off when I cleaned it. I painted the thermostat bypass hose, because the original was also painted engine color.

Engine Left Engine Back Engine Front
Left side full view. Three of the spark plugs are visible here. The original manifold gasket had heat shields to shield the spark plug wires from the manifold, but I havenít been able to come up with a replacement yet. The bare metal brace from the left side of the block to the transmission bell housing is visible here. Overall view from behind the motor. The odd left exhaust manifold is clearly visible here. It is made that way to clear the steering column. The is a brace from the manifold to the block at the block to transmission mounting flange. The two bare metal braces on either side at the bottom attach from the sides of the block to the bottom of the transmission bell housing. The oil filter is on the right. I installed a PH16 which is the short version of the PH8A. The little filters werenít being made when this car was new, but they will fit. Right side view. The positive crankcase ventilation (PCV) cap on the right valve color still has the original paint. The plug wire plastic insert clips on the valve cover are original, but are different than the ones used on the left. The normal exhaust manifold configuration is used on the right side. There is relatively more room on that side. The manifolds for the 273 were a little lighter than the ones used later on the 318s. The original body-to-block ground wire is dangling from the back right intake manifold bolt. It still has the original engine color paint on it. It was painted for a little over half its length.

Engine Left Engine Top Engine Right
Left side of bare engine. Top view of engine. One heater hose connection (the other is on top of the pump) is above the thermostat housing. The throttle spring hanger is below the housing. This car was delivered with a big Plymouth spring hanger. The bigger cars also used a spring for the transmission throttle connection, so this hanger has holes for two spring connections. The hole to the left of the bracket is where one brace for the A/C compressor is attached. The other brace connected to the hole in the upper intake runner. The exhaust gas crossover for heating the carburetor come out of the head at that little semi-circle. The carburetor choke heat control mounts in the well cast into the crossover passage. Later manifolds had an opening and a steel cup was mounted in the hole for the heat control so it would warm faster. The large hole on the back left intake runner is for vacuum to the manifold vacuum gauge and the vacuum controls for the A/C-heater system. Power brake vacuum booster would have picked up vacuum here. The bolt on the little flat below the vacuum port anchors the end of the throttle cable. Right side of bare engine.

Engine Left Close Engine Close
Breather cap on the oil fill opening. Original Nylon clips hold the spark plug wires in place on the valve cover. The left exhaust manifold has the number 2465847 cast into it. The original, painted valve cover bolts are on this cover. I must have lost the other five somewhere. The nut on the exhaust manifold stud still has some of the original paint. I suspect that many people replace all the bolts, studs, and nuts during a rebuild job. I found that there were only two bolts on the right motor mount. I donít remember what might have happened to the third. The two bolts had been cut into by vibration so I installed three new ones. I reused the two old conical washers. The date, 2-14-66, on the block is visible on the side of the block. The heat-riser valve is Ďfrození in the full open position. The brace from the block to the bottom of the transmission bell housing attaches just behind the exhaust manifold at the top hole on a little flat that has two holes in it.

Engine Front Close Engine Back Close
Timing mark on crankshaft damper at 5 degrees BTDC. The degree timing indicator plate is bolted on with the two bottom water pump bolts which thread into the timing chain cover, but do not go through it. The gas line from the fuel pump to the carburetor had to be bent slightly to match this replacement fuel pump. The crankshaft pulley is a multi-piece affair with a rubber damping ring between two layers. The metal extension from the water pump pulley to the fan is original I think. I donít think it came with a thermal clutch. Close view of top back. Iím going to use the original coil and see how it works. The distributor is original, too. The distributor clamp is from a 318 in a 1986 5th Avenue. I donít know what happened to the original. Iíll put it back on if I find it. That bolt is hard to get to though; the vacuum advance blocks a wrench from above, the manifold blocks access from the front and the oil pressure sender and distributor block access from the sides. That leaves the rear and thereís very little clearance between the block and the firewall. I replaced the points, condensor, rotor, cap, wires, and plugs. I rotated the distributor for the points to open at the 5 degree BTDC position, but I think itís supposed to be at 10 degrees. The two bolt holes on the back of the left head (a lifting bolt is in one of them) are used to bolt on the bracket that supports the carburetor throttle to transmission throttle lever linkage.



PAGE ONE - This page gives some details about the Barracuda and its history. There are photos of all sides of the car,photos of the short block in the car and the empty engine compartment, and shots of the greasy engine as it was pulled out. There is a photo of wreck damage to the left front fender. There are photos of the heads that have been in storage for 20 years after they were rebuilt. There is a photo comparing the original carburetor that was destroyed in storage and a NOS carburetor that someone gave me. There are photos of the automatic transmission and the gas tank. Links to other web articles are located on Page One
PAGE TWO - Page two has more detailed photos of the exterior and interior of the car. The pinstripes are shown and the dash and instrument panel. Front bucket seats and folding back seat and trunk panel. Photos of grille sections and taillight.
PAGE THREE - This pages has photos of the engine rebuilding work in progress at Cookie's Auto Machine Shop. It shows the bare short block, piston installation, and Cookie at work.
PAGE FOUR - Page four has 14 images showing the completed engine after it was painted and then after the exhaust manifolds, pulleys, fan, brackets, distributor, coil, and such had been re-installed. It seemed to be easier to install all those things before putting the engine in the car. My only concern is fitting the left manifold around the steering column while dropping the engine in.
PAGE FIVE - Page five has photos and comments of the engine re-installation. I demonstrate that I can carry the transmission (without the torque converter). There are a couple of photos of the clean engine compartment before the engine was installed and then a couple more of the engine after it was installed. I photographed the antifreeze warning and battery charge warning decals on the radiator support panel.
PAGE SIX - Page six has a photo of the Barracuda parked out in the driveway on the first day of spring 2004 and closeups of the carburetor as it is installed and the engine compartment with the engine in running configuration. It has been driven about 15 miles since the overhaul. There is a photo of the bottom of the car and of the left rear axle and brake parts with the wheel and brake drum removed.
BRAKES - Photos of complete rebuild of front drum brakes including removal of backing plate and regreasing bearings. Photos of back brakes and bearing plus back brake hose.
Alternator Wiring - Photos showing every connection from battery to alternator power output terminal and wiring through the voltage regulator to the field connection on the alternator. The wire I.D. numbers for the shop are given along with wire gauge and wire insulation color.
Instrument Panel Removal and Disassembly - This page shows photos of the instrument panel partially removed from the dash and the various connections that are made there. It also has detailed photos of the instruments and the printed circuit boards on the back and details of the speedometer mechanism.
A-Body Gas Cap Replacement - Photos of combining an old replacement cap and a new Stant 11811 cap to make a usable replacement for the original.
Original 66 Barracuda Radiator Photos - Photos of my original radiator.
1966 Barracuda Owners Manual - Selected pages from my owners manual.


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Barracuda History - This site provides an excellent brief history and description of the early Barracudas.
ULTRAJOSH - This site is an excellent resource for everyone who is working with the early Mopars. In addition to photos and details of his work on a '66 Barracuda there are links to sources of hard to find parts and instructions for all sorts of electrical work as well as mechanical. Check out this site. It may have just what you need to solve a Mopar problem! I found a source for an electronic voltage regulator that is built into a mechanical regulator case which accepts the original wiring connections!
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Page Post Date 1/7/04